Notably, at this year’s National Youth Awards hosted by the National Youth Council of Dominica (NYCD), Lakeyia Joseph, from the northern community of Bense, was awarded the Female Youth of the Year. Joseph is the owner and founder of Nature Blends and is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture and Business at the University of the West Indies, St. Augustine Campus.
Upon interview with Emonews, Joseph voiced that when she received the email that she had been nominated she was not completely star struck since numerous friends and family members had expressed their intention to nominate her. Despite this certainty of nomination, Joseph had absolutely no idea which categories she was nominated for and which awards she would have captured on that night.
Notably, Joseph received nominations for the categories of Youth in Agriculture and Youth in Entrepreneurship. After announcing the first category, Joseph was not successful but expressed that she believed that her fellow nominee deserved the award. “Aliyah has been putting in some good work and she truly deserves this. Despite not having won the Agriculture award I was very optimistic for the next category knowing where I stand as an entrepreneur and a person,” she articulated.
Fascinatingly, Joseph grasped the award for Outstanding Youth in Entrepreneurship, particularly for her contribution as owner of Nature Blends. Nature Blends is a locally based business which offers teas, extracts, powders and oils. While the business has faced its challenges such as limited funds and competitiveness, Joseph has overcame these through proper management and creating a trustworthy brand which could penetrate the competitive market.
Upon receiving the Youth in Entrepreneurship award, she stated, “I was very elated to have received that award knowing that I have been in business for just two years. It’s a testament to the strides that I have made and how far I’ve come.” Joseph believes that by winning this award she can be a source of inspiration to current and future entrepreneurs.
Interestingly, while Joseph only had public knowledge of these two categories, the NYCD awarded special award categories of which she captured the notable award of Female Youth of the Year. This award stems from not only her contribution as an entrepreneur but the range of other responsibilities she has acquired including community development, agriculture promotion, youth empowerment and more.
She currently stands as the founder of Golden Opportunities, co-founder of Youth with a Vision, president of Paix Bouche Constituency LYO, Opposition leader in the Youth Parliament, a Gender Equality and Women Empowerment champion and the list continues. Joseph voiced that the award for female youth of the year was unimaginable. “I sat in my sit speaking to Tasha P just listening to the category to see whose name will be called. When my name was called I was completely shocked and thought how interesting this is,” she articulated.
It did not stop there. Joseph went on to capture one more award, the Prime Minister’s youth award. “While all the awards were very prestigious, I felt like this award was the one which took the cake. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to the NYCD firstly and to the Prime Minister for this noteworthy recognition,” she stated.
Joseph encouraged other youths to put God first and to ensure that they put their hearts, minds and souls into everything that they do. “Appreciate where you are, who you have and where you are going,” she guided
When asked what is next on her agenda, Joseph expressed that she simply wants to continue to be the exemplary youth that she currently is. “I am not going to stop. Whatever comes my way, that is the direction that I am going to go,” she ended.
As Joseph continues to shine her light, Emonews wishes her all the best in her future endeavors.
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